May 6, 2013
Israel and Syria continue to fight, Robert Downey Jr. continues to pretend to fight, and in sunny, pastoral northern Pennsylvania, a former judge is still getting international attention a week after his sentencing over what amounts to a human-trafficking scheme. Welcome to your daily trends report for Monday, May 6, 2013. Mark Ciavarella, a former common pleas judge in Wilkes-Barre, Pa., was sentenced early last week for his role as a cog in the prison-industrial complex. Ciavarella and another judge, Michael Conahan, received kickback money from private jail operators to fill their beds with children as young as 10 without due process, often on first-time offenses.
March 27, 2013
I was saddened to read the obituaries for Anthony Lewis, the Pultizer Prize-winning reporter, columnist and author. He may be most familiar for his decades of work at the New York Times. But his book, "Gideon's Trumpet," was one of the first -- and best -- examples of literary journalism, which has flourished in the half-century that has followed its publication. In classic story-telling style, it explored a landmark Supreme Court case that granted legal representation to the poor, and was a forerunner of more current works such as Jon Krakauer's "Into Thin Air" or Rebecca Skloot's "The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks.
January 7, 2013
The musical version of Barry Levinson's "Diner," the much-admired 1982 movie about longtime buddies in Baltimore, is going to take longer to reach Broadway. The previously scheduled April 10 opening has been postponed until the fall, the New York Times reports. Seems that "Diner," a collaboration between Levinson and Sheryl Crow, who has written the songs for the show, needs more time to be developed and, especially, to raise money for its $9.5 million budget. The musical percolated in workshop form in New York last fall, a process adversely affected by ... Hurricane Sandy, according to producer Scott Zeiger.
January 3, 2013
Every day, they sit alone in their offices, writing about love, passion, romance. They bring to life muscled heroes, dangerous vixens, strong heroines — lovers all — then put enormous obstacles in the way of the would-be lovers so they must struggle for that happily-ever-after. The members of the Maryland Romance Writers meet once a month at the Arbutus Library to discuss the craft and business of writing the most popular genre of fiction in America. Their books are among the more than $1.3 billion worth of romance novels sold in a year.
November 7, 2012
The storm now afflicting New York and New Jersey and nearby states is either a northeaster or a nor'easter. Northeaster is the older term, its first citation in the Oxford English Dictionary dating from 1753. Nor'easter blew in from the sea much later, first cited in a translation of Aristophanes' Knights by B.D. Walsh in 1837. Nor'easter , from the citations in the OED , appears to have been strongly dialectical, as in A.R. Ammons's Glare : "Well, it's Easter morning right now, with a nor'easter, out-of-whack, whipper-jawed, eight-inch dump load of snow on the ground.
October 29, 2012
Renowned for unique auction items at its annual Gala, the Harford County Public Library Foundation recently added a catered lunch for six with New York Times bestselling author Jeff Shaara to its live auction. The auction will take place at 8:30 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 3, at the Abingdon Library during the Library's Gala, Once Upon a Time - an Evening in the Stacks. Shaara has written 11 historical war novels that have made the New York Times bestseller list and will also be the feature author for the Foundation's annual Night Out @ the Library on April 19, 2013.
September 24, 2012
As October Breast Cancer Awareness Month approaches, a new study has been gaining big attention today. Researchers doing what The New York Times calls the "first comprehensive genetic analysis of breast cancer" have named four genetically distinct types of breast cancer. While the new treatments expected to come from the research are years off, the study published Sunday in the journal Nature is considered a breakthrough, the newspaper reported. "This is the road map for how we might cure breast cancer in the future," Dr. Matthew Ellis of Washington University, a researcher for the study, told The New York Times.
July 16, 2012
Your coverage of Doug O'Neill, trainer of Preakness winner I'll Have Another, was truthful but not very careful ("I'll Have Another's treatment 'routine,'" July 13). Mr. O'Neill said he had not drugged his horses, and that was the end of the story. Except that Mr. O'Neill apparently lied to your reporter, and it wasn't the end of the story. The New York Times reported that, in fact, Mr. O'Neill and others had repeatedly drugged that horse. We are lucky we didn't have to watch as yet another horse break down before our eyes at the Preakness.
July 12, 2012
Veterinarians who examined Preakness winner I'll Have Another before and after the race at Pimlico Race Course said this week that he was healthy and that his medication regimen was not unusual. The New York Times reported that the colt, who also won the Kentucky Derby but scratched with a tendon injury a day before the Belmont Stakes, had suffered from osteoarthritis and was given "powerful painkillers and a synthetic joint fluid" in the days leading up to the final leg of the Triple Crown.
July 5, 2012
The New York Times at nytimes.com: "General Tlass was the son of another general, Mustafa Tlass, who was a close confidante of President Hafez al-Assad, father of the current president. " The elder General Tlass was presumably a man, and therefore a confidant . Confidante is the feminine form of the word. There are, in fact, two errors involved here, because a confidant/confidante is by definition a close, trusted friend or companion.